As I get ready to send our holiday cards(I know I’m late) to those that interacted with ZeVin Creations this year I thought I should get our guest blogger – Julieta Kendall – to provide our readers some insight on holiday cards from a business perspective. Enjoy!
SCROOGE THE HOLIDAYS
by Julieta Kendall
Hello, again! Recently, we mastered Thank-You note writing guerilla-style by using the APE method. Today I want to tackle Holiday greeting cards because, folks, ‘Tis the Season whether you like it or not. As a small business owner, you should enjoy the holiday season. Not only is it a warm and fuzzy time of year filled with good tidings and cheer, strategically it is a great opportunity to increase your visibility with key clients and inject a personal element into heretofore staid business relationships. I know what you’re thinking: using holiday greeting cards as a business opportunity seems artificial, commercial, and all around smacks of poor taste. Trust me: with a good dose of sincerity and my Scrooge Approach to holiday cards you’ll seem far more charitable than chintzy, and rightly so.
The Scrooge Approach is extremely simple, and, obviously, inspired by the famous Charles Dickens’ character in A Christmas Carol. To use the Scrooge Approach, you simply remember the three ghosts of the season (Past, Present, and Future) and apply it to your business relationship to individualize your holiday greetings and make them stand out from the rest. And, just like the ghosts, keep your greeting to three lines to ensure maximum readability. You can write more if you like, but make it relevant.
As usual, I like to run through an example to see how the approach works. We’ll assume you own a company, In the Knit of Time, that features your famous Fuzzy Socks and you have a large wholesale client, Bob, from Cold Tootsies, one of the country’s largest sock retailers. Let’s see how the Scrooge Approach works, shall we?
The Ghost of Business Past
You start your holiday greeting by acknowledging your business relationship over the past year(s). Get it? Here is your Ghost of Business Past. In one line, you let your important client know that you appreciate their part in your business’ growth over the past year. You can write in a professional or personal tone, depending on the overall culture of your company, in general, or your business relationship with the client, specifically.
Thank you so much for your support of Fuzzy Socks this past year.
Easy, right? Moving on…
The Ghost of Business Present
Time to show your important client how much you value the relationship in a sincere manner. Address the recipient by name, again, either formally or informally, depending on your relationship. Show off your customer service skills! Having said that, this is not the time to pucker up. No one likes a bootlicker, especially one who uses the holidays to do so. Save the sucking up for the industry shows if you have the stomach for that sort of thing.
Working with you, Bob, is always a pleasure.
It doesn’t look like much, but nothing grabs someone’s attention faster than seeing their name in print. If you had two cards in front of you with the same message, but one person took the time to address you personally, which would you remember? Exactly.
The Ghost of Business Future
Last, but not least, wish your client a happy holiday season and encourage a future business relationship. This is where you can show off your creativity and subtly reinforce your brand. Alternatively, you can go the traditional route. The message is simple; the execution is up to you.
All of us at In the Knit of Time wish you and the entire Cold Tootsies team a warm holiday season and a prosperous new year filled with peace, joy, and, of course, Fuzzy Socks.
Now you have a personal holiday greeting for your important business clients that speaks volumes about your company. Now you have no excuse to put off those cards. The next time you feel like saying “Bah, humbug!” to holiday greetings, remember the Scrooge Approach and see if it doesn’t help put you in the holiday spirit.
Thank you so much for your support of Fuzzy Socks this past year. Working with you, Bob, is always a pleasure. All of us at In the Knit of Time wish you and the entire Cold Tootsies team a warm holiday season and a prosperous new year filled with peace, joy, and, of course, Fuzzy Socks.
About the Author – Julieta is the owner of The Poem Company, a tiny, little writing studio in southern California that specializes in custom invitation wording and greeting cards verses. She writes voraciously and considers reading as important as breathing. Julieta occasionally flips through the dictionary for fun and finds the rules of grammar exciting, which explains her popularity in high school immensely.